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HRSA Project TeamUP Stipend Recipient Spotlight

HRSA Project TeamUP Stipend Recipient Spotlight

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Hi! My name is Diana, “Didi” for short, Orozco and I am in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling masters program, here at USD. I would like to start off by expressing my gratitude to the faculty and my classmates for the continuous support, as well as, thank Lily and Dr. Lebensohn-Chialvo for this opportunity to share my experiences with others. I would also like to thank Dr. Hall, my individual and group supervisor, who has been pivotal in my success and who provided me with the opportunity to help him in several multicultural research projects as his research assistant.

My program lasts three years and I am a third-year, which means I graduate in May of this year! Woohoo! In addition to my coursework I am completing my practicum work at South Bay Guidance Center, in Chula Vista. I get the chance to work primarily with outpatient adults struggling with severe mental illnesses and occasionally with transitional aged youths. We provide wrap-around psychiatric services in the form of individual therapy, group therapy, and medication management. As I gained experience through my practicum work I felt supported and well-trained. I can recall during my first few weeks of practicum, in June of last year, a time when I was in need of supervision for my first client in need of safety planning. I was able to lean into my discomfort and utilize risk assessment skills that I learned in Dr. G’s class. I was nervous but felt that I could navigate this situation with the help of my site supervisor and team.

I am an advocate for working with marginalized populations and passionate about being of service to those populations. HRSA has played a huge role in guiding my Spanish speaking training as a clinician. Dr. Lebensohn-Chialvo has been instrumental in supporting my bilingual skills as a developing clinician. There are also Pláticas, which are informal meetings that are student organized for all counseling programs. These meetings are for Spanish-speaking counselors to share cases in order to better our skills as bilingual clinicians. I am thankful for the culturally sensitive and competent individuals who have built such a great network.

During my time at USD I have served as a Board Member for the Latinx Graduate Student Association (LGSA), a student-led organization brimming with passionate individuals. I have also had the opportunity to study abroad in both Japan and Italy. The time spent abroad has been so valuable to me in furthering my multicultural competence. I plan to continue my career in Escondido, North County San Diego. Here at USD my passion to serve vulnerable populations has grown. The community of people, staff and fellow classmates, always encourage a well-balanced lifestyle. As I approach my next chapter of life, I will take with me solid friendships, professional relationships, as well as the skills and training I have gained from this program.

Advice to Prospective Students:

I would like to encourage any students to not be afraid to reach out to the faculty if you have any interest in research. All of us here in SOLES are passionate about supporting your passions and aspirations and will respond to you advocating for yourself.

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Lily Vistica
lilydancis@sandiego.edu
619-260-4600 ex 4369

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